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What you need to know about having us build custom rafts

Jack's Plastic Welding builds custom rafts. It takes some time and effort on the part of the customer to help us understand what exactly is wanted. However, we do have a couple of customers who have been extremely satisfied with the results. It takes a special customer with special needs. Custom self bailing rafts do take some time to design, and it does take some collaboration with the customer. There are times of the year when we are too busy to do this, and even when we are not too busy, It generally takes about 8 weeks after the order is in place. So you can see that a custom raft is something that should take carefull thought.

Please have a look at some of the general features that we want to keep, or we will be trying to talk you into using because we think they work very well.

About the pictured raft
Dave B emailed us about having us build a raft design that he had never seen before. He was very specific. He knew what he wanted, and this is what he asked for:

  • A 15.5 ft long boat with a 78 inch wide beam.
  • This boat would have an 8 inch kick in the front and come to a narrow front section of approximately 18 inches.
  • In the back he wanted a 6 inch kick, a double layer of material for mounting a transom, and it had to be much wider in the rear for the motor, approximately 34 inches.
  • We usually put 4 chambers in a boat. Dave wanted 6.
  • On a boat this size we usually suggest 22 inch tubes; he wanted a smaller tube for less wind resistance, and a large drop stitch floor.
  • On top of all that, we built mesh panels that fit existing frames he used to carry animals killed on hunting trips.
  • He also asked us about how we may build a wind screen on the front for foul weather. The purple pocket in the model holds the flexible pole that makes up the back of the screen.
  • He asked us to remove all 2 inch d-rings and replace them with many more 1 inch d-rings.

We soon realized he was building his concept of the ultimate hunting raft. The computer model abouve is what we came up with. Dave really knew what he wanted, and there are a few folks that do. If you are one of them, we can build a custom raft for you also. Below is the finished product on a trip in Alaska.

When we ask Dave how the boat worked, this is what he said:
Jack, back from the big adventure. We floated/motored 240 air miles on a river in Northern Alaska. We saw thousands of Caribou, lots of Grizzlies, wolverine, wolfs and falcons. Never saw any sign of any other people the whole trip. Raft functioned absolutely perfectly. The only thing I would change would be to put a handle in the lower bow to help pull it on shore.

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